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Weird Tech: Never mix water and gadgets?

Rice: it's not just a staple part of your diet you know. It'll fix your mobile phone as well
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It's been a positively inspiring week in the world of tech - we're starting to think there's something in the water.

Over at NPR it was a keyboard.

After learning that the average keyboard harbours more bacteria than a toilet seat, one woman carefully stacked hers in the dishwasher for a quick rinse. Amazingly, the inevitable didn't happen; the keyboard is still fully operational - and cleaner of course.

And the best way to dry said electronic kit? In rice, apparently. A Washington Post reporter was able to restore his soaking mobile phone to full working order - after dropping it down the toilet ( easily done , apparently) - by marinating it in a bowl of uncooked rice overnight.

Better to sacrifice a bag of rice then your alcohol reserves , as per alternative methods. That's what we say.

Gadget of the week

It was a tough one this time round. We're torn between the extremely cool sit-on vacuum cleaner , and the altogether-less-wholesome Squirrel Catapult . There was also an exceptional effort in the form of The Carpet Alarm Clock : a small mat you're forced to stand on to make it stop.

Which is great, unless you own a dog. Or a cat. And don't put it upside down at your bed either, or it'll be 03:80 in the morning. And that, as one astute blogger comments, just doesn't help a hangover one bit.

Here's food for thought: a prisoner at Swaleside Prison on the Isle of Sheppey was caught with an entire phone charger hidden up his ****. Apparently a search of his cell also revealed two "fist-sized" blocks of cannabis and cocaine.

And congratulations also to the man who finally managed to get himself a Zune tattoo. We'd like to tell you it was a spur of the minute thing. In fact, he was so pleased that he came back a few days later for another one. Nice touch.

And finally...

A 17-year-old car crash victim turned his fellow hospital patient's life-support machine off because it was keeping him awake. If only nurses had given him a Squirrel Catapult to help pass the time instead...

Julia Sagar
Content director, special projects

Julia specialises in ecommerce at Future. For the last four years, she’s split her time between leading TechRadar’s crack team of deal editors - covering all the biggest sales of the year including Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Amazon Prime Day - and helping the audiences of Future’s consumer tech and lifestyle brands (TechRadar, Tom's Guide, T3, Marie Claire, Woman & Home and more) find the best products and services for their needs and budget.


A former editor of global design website Creative Bloq, she has over 15 years’ experience in online and print journalism, and was part of the team that launched TechRadar way back in the day. When she isn't reviewing mattresses (she’s tested more than she cares to remember), or sharing tips on how to save money in the latest sales, she can usually be found writing about anything from green energy to graphic design.